French Brittany vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison

French Brittany vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed ComparisonFrench Brittany is originated from France but Boykin Spaniel is originated from United States. French Brittany may grow 26 cm / 10 inches shorter than Boykin Spaniel. Both French Brittany and Boykin Spaniel are having almost same weight. French Brittany may live 3 years less than Boykin Spaniel. Both French Brittany and Boykin Spaniel has almost same litter size. French Brittany requires Low maintenance. But Boykin Spaniel requires Moderate maintenance


french brittany - historyBrittanys are the product of France, actually developed in the Brittany Province. They are gun dogs designed to hunt birds. Referred to more often than not as a Spaniel their method of working is much more in line with the setters and pointers. They are believed to be developed somewhere between the 17th and 19th centuries, but not recognized until the 20th century. Orange and white dogs were portrayed on 17th century tapestries, hunting and retrieving. In 1850 the Reverend Davies wrote the first record of Brittanys that was verifiable.

The Brittany was recognized for the first time in 1907 as their own breed even though they participated in the Paris Dog Show in 1900. Once recognized the standards were written as well. It was not until 1931 that the breed was recognized in America and 1934 before the American Kennel Club approved them. Until 1982 they were known as the French Brittany Spaniel. The Spaniel was dropped in ’82. In the United Kingdom the Brittany is known as an HPR (Hunt, Point and Retrieve) breed and they do so with both birds and small game such as hares. The Brittany’s have more dual champions than any other American Kennel Club Sporting Breed in both Confirmation and Field Trials.

There are some differences between the current day French Brittany and the “American Brittany”. They are the same breed but different sub-sets and there are differences that can be noted between the two. The French Brittany is smaller than the newer American version and works closer to the hunter and the guns, while the American Brittany runs ahead of the hunter quite often. Some breeders however don’t consider these differences to be sub-sets and believe that the American breeders should accept the French standards reflecting the origin of the breed.

boykin spaniel - historyThe Boykin Spaniel was originally bred by South Carolina hunters as the perfect dog for hunting wild bird during the early 1900s. Alexander White of Spartanburg found a short, well built dog and named him Dumpy. The dog was given to a certain L. Whitaker Boykin and a similar dog in looks was found and mated with Dumpy on Boykin’s Pine Grove plantation. Whitaker Boykin was particularly looking for a special kind of hunting dog breed that could wade into swamplands and into water.

Boykin’s spaniels were popular in South Carolina before World War II and later, in 1977, the Boykin Spaniel Society was founded to ensure the breeding standards of the dog. In 1985, the Boykin Spaniel was declared the state dog of South Carolina and recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2009.


french brittany puppy - descriptionThe French Brittany is an energetic, compact, solid, athletic dog. They have average size heads, intelligent expressions, floppy ears, and a long, elastic and free gait. Most Brittanys are born with short tails but if not, they are docked outside the United Kingdom. Docking is illegal in the United Kingdom so those Brittanys might have a long tail.

Their coats are orange roan, orange and white and liver roan. A tricoat of orange, liver and white is allowed within a specific placement of the three colors.

The Boykin’s Looks:

boykin spaniel puppy - descriptionYou can’t miss the medium-sized Boykin Spaniel with his magnificent coat in different shades of brown. When he gleams in the sun he looks like chocolate. This type of Spaniel is a bit bigger than the English Cocker Spaniel, but he is heavier, weighing between 13 to 18kg. He has large, floppy feathery ears and the tail has always been docked to give him that distinct look, but now with rules and regulations, the tail is often left so that it is long and feathery. The height of this dog at the withers is 39 to 43cm.

The length of the dog’s coat varies somewhat because of the different breeds from the past. Essentially the coat is medium length and wavy to curly with light feathering around the legs, ears, chest and stomach.


The Boykin Spaniel is social and he makes an excellent family pet. He is good around children and other dogs, and with training and socialization he becomes even more amicable and obedient.



french brittany dog - characteristicsVery friendly with children

Special talents

Dual champions in Field Trials and Confirmation. They both point and retrieve.


They are not as adaptable as some hunting breeds. They are very active and need space both indoors and out. They are not recommended for life in apartments in the city. A rural environment is best. They do not adapt well to the damp and cold weather.

Learning ability

They are very intelligent and have very high learning ability.

boykin spaniel dog - characteristicsThe Boykin Spaniel is a diverse breed. The characteristics of the dog aren’t set in stone. He is a hunting dogs with boundless energy and enthusiasm. He is an intelligent breed and responds well to training and is obedient to your commands. He is all about fun and excitement and he is guaranteed to make a splendid companion.

Active and social, he is going to need input from his owners in terms of exercise and mental stimulation. He isn’t a dog to just ignore and in exchange for love and care, he is going to be a loving, loyal and fun companion for you.

Health Problems

french brittany puppies - health problemsGenerally, a hardy breed that is mostly healthy, the Brittany in France usually lives on average 12 years 6 months. In the UK the average if 12 years and 11 months and many dogs living to be 14 or 15. Some of the health issues that might pop up for the Brittany include:

  1. Ear Infections
  2. Hip Dysplasia
  3. Canine Discoid Lupus Erythematosus
  4. Epilepsy

boykin spaniel puppies - health problemsThe Boykin Spaniel is a healthy breed with a life span of 14 to 16 years. There are some diseases that you want to be aware of with your Boykin Spaniel.

Hip Dysplasia:

Always be aware of Hip Dysplasia as it can reduce your pet’s quality of life.. In dogs with hip dysplasia, the hip joint doesn’t to develop properly and deterioration sets in and your pet can lose function of the joint. You’ll notice your pet battling to stand up after lying down. The frightening this is that some dogs begin to show signs of hip dysplasia as early as 4 months of age.

Most Common Health Problems:

The Boykin Spaniel’s most common health problems apart from hip dysplasia are patellar luxation and juvenile cataracts.

Caring The Pet

Feeding the puppy

french brittany dogs - caringFeed puppies a high quality puppy food designed for medium sized dogs. Give about one to one and a half cups per day in 2-3 meals.

Feeding the adult

For the adult French Brittany feed a high quality adult dry food designed for medium sized dogs. Give about two cups per day in 2 meals.

Points for Good Health

Excellent vision and scent

Games and Exercises

The French Brittany is an active and enthusiastic bird dog that loves to exercise. They have the stamina and drive that goes with an efficient and successful hunting dog. They need daily exercise, regular walks and excel at field trials and confirmation. They are also good at lure chase, flyball, rally and obedience.


boykin spaniel dogs - caringThe Boykin Spaniel has been a gun dog and because he is energetic, he will need plenty of exercise and activities. Take him for walks or allow him to swim in the farm dam if you live in the country. He isn’t a dog to leave on his own in your backyard as he needs exercise as well as mental stimulation to keep him from becoming frustrated and developing destructive habits.


The Boykin’s hair will need to be brushed as least twice a week to prevent it from matting, particularly if he is a country-living dog, in and out of water and running through long grass. He is not a heavy shedder but his shedding is seasonal. As a long eared dog, he will need to have his ears checked to prevent infection.

Other grooming habits to get used to with your Boykin Spaniel are having his nails trimmed and brushing his teeth at least 2 or 3 times a week with special dog toothpaste and brush.


Boykin Spaniel owners who know the breed well say that there is nothing better than feeding your dog raw meat with vegetables and rice. Of course, not everyone can afford to feed their pets raw meat every day, and that’s alright. Just make sure that every now and then you include raw meat into your pet’s diet.

The very best commercially produced dog foods can also be good for your pet. If in doubt, speak to your veterinarian about the best food for your active, energetic pet. Never, ever deprive your pet of fresh, cool water throughout the day and night.

Basic Information

Gun dog
Gun dog
United States
Height Male:
17 - 20 cm
6 - 8 inches
39 - 46 cm
15 - 19 inches
Height Female:
15 - 19 cm
5 - 8 inches
36 - 44 cm
14 - 18 inches
Weight Male:
14 - 20 kg
30 - 45 pounds
14 - 18 kg
30 - 40 pounds
Weight Female:
13 - 17 kg
28 - 38 pounds
12 - 18 kg
26 - 40 pounds
Life Span:
12 - 13 Years
14 - 16 Years
Litter Size:
5 - 8
5 - 7
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Brittany Spaniel Brittany Wiegref Epagneul Breton French Brittany Spaniel
Swamp Poodle, Little Brown Dog
Colors Available:
liver roan, black and white (not universally accepted), orange roan, Orange and white, black roan, liver and white, tricolor
Chocolate Brown, Liver
flowing , medium length
Medium length, wavy or curly
Moderate, Seasonal
Alert, Energetic, Friendly, Intelligent, Loving
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social
Low maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Kids Friendly:
New Owners Friendly:

Comparison with other breeds

  1. French Brittany vs English Springer Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  2. French Brittany vs American Cocker Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  3. French Brittany vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  4. French Brittany vs English Setter - Breed Comparison
  5. French Brittany vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  6. French Brittany vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  7. French Brittany vs Braque d'Auvergne - Breed Comparison
  8. French Brittany vs Barbet - Breed Comparison
  9. French Brittany vs Ariege Pointer - Breed Comparison
  10. French Brittany vs Blue Picardy Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  11. French Brittany vs Canadian Pointer - Breed Comparison
  12. French Brittany vs Deutsch Drahthaar - Breed Comparison
  13. French Brittany vs Clumber Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  14. French Brittany vs Braque du Bourbonnais - Breed Comparison
  15. French Brittany vs Cesky Fousek - Breed Comparison
  16. French Brittany vs Drentse Patrijshond - Breed Comparison
  17. Pudelpointer vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  18. Picardy Spaniel vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  19. Pont-Audemer Spaniel vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  20. Irish Water Spaniel vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  21. Stabyhoun vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  22. Styrian Coarse Haired Hound vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  23. Vizsla vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  24. Large Munsterlander vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  25. Tyrolean Hound vs French Brittany - Breed Comparison
  26. English Springer Spaniel vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  27. Brittany vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  28. English Setter vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  29. Boykin Spaniel vs American Cocker Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  30. Boykin Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  31. Boykin Spaniel vs Barbet - Breed Comparison
  32. Boykin Spaniel vs Blue Picardy Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  33. Pudelpointer vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  34. Picardy Spaniel vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  35. Braque d'Auvergne vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  36. Ariege Pointer vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  37. Pont-Audemer Spaniel vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  38. Irish Water Spaniel vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  39. Canadian Pointer vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  40. Deutsch Drahthaar vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  41. Clumber Spaniel vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  42. Stabyhoun vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  43. Styrian Coarse Haired Hound vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  44. Vizsla vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  45. Large Munsterlander vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  46. Tyrolean Hound vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  47. Cockalier vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  48. Braque du Bourbonnais vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  49. Cesky Fousek vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison

View/Compare Breeds

Popular Dog Breeds